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Rev Bras Hematol Hemoter. 2015 Jul-Aug;37(4):223-9. doi: 10.1016/j.bjhh.2015.03.009. Epub 2015 Apr 14.

Acute lymphoblastic leukemia in children and adolescents: prognostic factors and analysis of survival.

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Universidade Federal do Ceará (UFC), Fortaleza, CE, Brazil. Electronic address:
Universidade Federal do Ceará (UFC), Fortaleza, CE, Brazil.
Hospital Infantil Albert Sabin (HIAS), Fortaleza, CE, Brazil.



To describe the clinical and laboratory features of children and adolescents with acute lymphoblastic leukemia treated at three referral centers in Ceará and evaluate prognostic factors for survival, including age, gender, presenting white blood cell count, immunophenotype, DNA index and early response to treatment.


Seventy-six under 19-year-old patients with newly diagnosed acute lymphoblastic leukemia treated with the Grupo Brasileiro de Tratamento de Leucemia da Infância - acute lymphoblastic leukemia-93 and -99 protocols between September 2007 and December 2009 were analyzed. The diagnosis was based on cytological, immunophenotypic and cytogenetic criteria. Associations between variables, prognostic factors and response to treatment were analyzed using the chi-square test and Fisher's exact test. Overall and event-free survival were estimated by Kaplan-Meier analysis and compared using the log-rank test. A Cox proportional hazards model was used to identify independent prognostic factors.


The average age at diagnosis was 6.3±0.5 years and males were predominant (65%). The most frequently observed clinical features were hepatomegaly, splenomegaly and lymphadenopathy. Central nervous system involvement and mediastinal enlargement occurred in 6.6% and 11.8%, respectively. B-acute lymphoblastic leukemia was more common (89.5%) than T-acute lymphoblastic leukemia. A DNA index >1.16 was found in 19% of patients and was associated with favorable prognosis. On Day 8 of induction therapy, 95% of the patients had lymphoblast counts <1000/μL and white blood cell counts <5.0×10(9)/L. The remission induction rate was 95%, the induction mortality rate was 2.6% and overall survival was 72%.


The prognostic factors identified are compatible with the literature. The 5-year overall and event-free survival rates were lower than those reported for developed countries. As shown by the multivariate analysis, age and baseline white blood cell count were independent prognostic factors.


Adolescent; Child; Leukemia; Lymphoid; Survival

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